Brown Tops Kerry in an Updated Tradition
Softball Rivalry Beats Yankees-Red Sox Competition
Both teams wore Boston Red Sox caps and jerseys, but the rivalry was as fierce as any Fenway classic against the New York Yankees.
In the start of what may become a new Capitol Hill softball tradition, the office of Sen. Scott Brown (R-Mass.) handily defeated the office of Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) in a friendly scrimmage on the National Mall last week. The Great Scotts, led by Brown at first base, defeated Kerry’s Green Monsters 11-6.
“A lot of pride is at stake,” said Colin Reed, team captain and press secretary for Brown.
“It’s a tradition,” Brown said, explaining his involvement with the Great Scotts, who are in first place in their Senate Softball League division. “Everyone has a lot of fun. It’s a nice way to unwind and some nice friendly competition.”
The highlight of the game came when both Senators went to bat. Kerry arrived straight from the Hill in suit and tie. He went into the game as a pinch hitter and grounded out to end the inning. Brown went to bat immediately after Kerry, at the start of the next half-inning. He also hit a ground ball and was thrown out at first.
“I didn’t play softball. I played other sports,” Kerry said, describing his performance at the plate as “terrible.”
The Kerry-Brown game — which doesn’t count for playoff rankings — replaces the annual tradition of Kerry’s office playing Sen. Edward Kennedy’s team, the legendary Ted Sox — who disbanded after the Massachusetts Democrat’s death last year. That game was a tradition that both Senators relished and that dates back to the 1980s, according to Kerry staffers.
“I used to always come out with Teddy. Every game,” Kerry said. According to Kerry, both Senators made it a point never to miss the game. While neither Senator actually went to bat, the Kerry-Kennedy matchup was the highlight of the season for both teams.
“We used to say the other games were practices and that the game versus the Ted Sox was the World Series,” said Whitney Smith, Kerry’s press secretary. “Sen. Kennedy would come and Sen. Kerry would come, and we’d always have a big rivalry.”
With Kennedy’s death, the Kerry-Brown game is the reincarnation of the matchup. That rivalry is “competitive but cordial,” Brown said.
Does Brown’s Republican affiliation make the game more intense? Not according to the Kerry team. “I think it’s still fun to have a rivalry with our delegation,” Smith said. “We’ll start new traditions now.”
The Senators’ district offices also played a simultaneous match in Massachusetts. Brown’s team also prevailed in that game, 12-6.
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